Only one stimulus construction project remains to be bid
ITD opened bids Tuesday on two federal stimulus highway projects that will create construction jobs and significantly improve safety and driving conditions in the Chubbuck/Pocatello and Rigby areas.
I-86, Chubbuck Interchange to Pocatello Creek Interchange. Knife River Construction Inc., of Boise, is the apparent low bidder on the Interstate 86, Chubbuck Interchange to Pocatello Creek Interchange project that will add a 3.4-mile auxiliary lane and reduce morning and evening congestion on the heavily traveled commuter route. The apparent low bid was $8 million. The project was estimated to cost $11 million.
The project, expected to begin next month, is one of eight highway construction projects in Idaho that will use federal stimulus funds to strengthen the economy through much-needed investments in the transportation system. The Chubbuck/Pocatello project is expected to create or sustain about 150 jobs, most of which will go to Idaho workers.
"I am pleased these projects are going to construction this summer and Idahoans will be put to work," said Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter. "Theses project support economic recovery, improve safety on both Idaho 48 and Interstate 86 and will help alleviate congestion.”
Four contractors including Knife River Construction bid on the project.
Traffic volume on major routes in the Pocatello urban area continues to grow, resulting in considerable congestion during morning and evening commutes. Highway traffic engineers identified the need for a significant improvement in 1998 as part of an overall Urban Interstate system study. The need was confirmed in a subsequent 2003 Yellowstone Avenue corridor plan.
Approximately 30,000 vehicles regularly travel the route north of Pocatello that includes Yellowstone Avenue, Alameda Road, I-86 and I-15. Construction of auxiliary lanes will reduce congestion and commuting times for area motorists.
The project will add an auxiliary lane on Yellowstone, between Lou Avenue and the Chubbuck Interchange. At that point, an additional lane will continue along the eastbound on-ramp, then along I-86 to the Wye Interchange with I-15 and continue south on I-15 to the Pocatello Creek Interchange. It will progress along the southbound off-ramp onto Alameda Road and continue west to Jefferson Street.
Construction is expected to begin in late July and continue into the 2011 construction season.
Idaho 48 Rigby High School to Yellowstone Hwy: HK Contractors Inc., of Idaho Falls, is the apparent low bidder to widen Idaho 48 to three lanes, add a right-turn bay to the high school entrance, include a bike lane on both sides of the street and install curb, gutter and sidewalk along the busy route in Rigby. HK bid $2.93 million. The project was estimated to cost $5 million.
Idaho 48 is the main east-west artery in Rigby, connecting the population centers on both sides of U.S. 20 that divides the community. Improving the 1.7-mile corridor will meet the growing traffic needs in the area and improve safety into Rigby High School.
Work will begin in late July/early August and be completed this fall. One side of the road will be constructed at a time to keep the highway open and minimize the inconvenience to motorists.
The project is estimated to create or sustain approximately 54 jobs.
Progress on Idaho's transportation stimulus projects can be followed at accountability.idaho.gov or at itd.idaho.gov